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Article

From Burden to Depressive Symptoms in Informal Caregivers during the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Path Analysis

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Institute for Medical Statistics and Informatics, Faculty of Medicine, University of Belgrade, 11000 Belgrade, Serbia
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Red Cross of Serbia, 11000 Belgrade, Serbia
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Department of Humanities, Faculty of Medicine, University of Belgrade, 11000 Belgrade, Serbia
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Department for Neurology and Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine, 38220 Kosovska Mitrovica, Serbia
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Department of Occupational Therapy, College for Social Work, 11000 Belgrade, Serbia
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Medical School, Academy of Applied Studies Belgrade, 11000 Belgrade, Serbia
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Center for Informatics and Biostatistics Belgrade, Public Health Institute, 11000 Belgrade, Serbia
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Faculty of Medicine, University of Belgrade, 11000 Belgrade, Serbia
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Department of Anesthesiology, Clinical Center of Serbia, 11000 Belgrade, Serbia
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Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Nephrology and Hypertension, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN 55902, USA
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
First co-authors.
Senior co-authors.
Academic Editor: Paul B. Tchounwou
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(18), 9577; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18189577
Received: 21 July 2021 / Revised: 3 September 2021 / Accepted: 4 September 2021 / Published: 11 September 2021
Background: The objective of this study was to assess the complex relationship between the multiple determinants of the caregiving process, the caregiver burden, and depression during the COVID-19 pandemic in Serbia. Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted on a nationally representative sample (n = 798) during the COVID-19 pandemic in Serbia from March to September 2020. A nine-section questionnaire designed for this study included the characteristics of caregivers, characteristics of care and care recipients, COVID-19 related questions, and the following standardized instruments: 12-Item Short-Form Health Survey, Fatigue Severity Scale, Activities of Daily Living Scale and Instrumental Activities of Daily Living Scale, Zarit Caregiver Burden Scale, and Beck Depression Inventory. Path analysis was used for the simultaneous assessment of the direct and indirect relationships of all determinants. Results: More than two thirds (71.9%) of informal caregivers experienced a burden, and more than one quarter (27.1%) had depression symptomatology. Self-rated physical health, need for psychosocial support, and caregiver burden were the main direct predictors of depression. Multiple determinants of the caregiving process had indirect effects on depressive symptomatology via the caregiver burden as a mediating factor. Conclusions: The subjective burden presented a significant risk factor for depressive symptoms in caregivers during the COVID-19 pandemic. The provision of psychosocial support was identified as an important opportunity to reduce depressive risk in informal caregivers. View Full-Text
Keywords: informal caregiver; the COVID-19; burden; depression; psychosocial support; mental health; path analysis informal caregiver; the COVID-19; burden; depression; psychosocial support; mental health; path analysis
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MDPI and ACS Style

Rajovic, T.; Todorovic, N.; Vracevic, M.; Rajovic, N.; Pavlovic, A.; Pavlovic, V.; Grbic, I.; Sapic, R.; Krsmanovic, S.; Vukmirovic, M.; Stanisavljevic, T.; Markovic, K.; Mostic, T.; Stanisavljevic, D.; Milic, N. From Burden to Depressive Symptoms in Informal Caregivers during the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Path Analysis. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18, 9577. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18189577

AMA Style

Rajovic T, Todorovic N, Vracevic M, Rajovic N, Pavlovic A, Pavlovic V, Grbic I, Sapic R, Krsmanovic S, Vukmirovic M, Stanisavljevic T, Markovic K, Mostic T, Stanisavljevic D, Milic N. From Burden to Depressive Symptoms in Informal Caregivers during the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Path Analysis. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2021; 18(18):9577. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18189577

Chicago/Turabian Style

Rajovic, Tatjana, Natasa Todorovic, Milutin Vracevic, Nina Rajovic, Andrija Pavlovic, Vedrana Pavlovic, Igor Grbic, Rosa Sapic, Slavica Krsmanovic, Marijana Vukmirovic, Tamara Stanisavljevic, Ksenija Markovic, Tanja Mostic, Dejana Stanisavljevic, and Natasa Milic. 2021. "From Burden to Depressive Symptoms in Informal Caregivers during the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Path Analysis" International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 18, no. 18: 9577. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18189577

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